IRVINE, Calif., Nov. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The University of California, Irvine OpenCourseWare initiative today announced that two of its free online courses, Algebra and Pre-Calculus, accessible through its partnership with Coursera, will be available for evaluation by the American Council on Education (ACE) for possible credit recommendations. This new third party evaluation, conducted through ACE's College Credit Recommendation Service (ACE CREDIT®), has the potential to make these select courses completed through Coursera eligible for college transfer credit at institutions choosing to accept the ACE recommendations.
Since its initial course offerings, Coursera has accelerated its mission to educate millions of students worldwide while building meaningful community engagement systems and establishing advanced technologies that support online learning. It currently enrolls more than 1.3 million students around the globe. UC Irvine courses offered through Coursera are "Principles of Public Health," "Fundamentals of Personal Financial Planning," "Microeconomics," "Algebra," "Pre-Calculus," and "Science from Superheroes to Global Warming." To date, UC Irvine's open courses have received over 100,000 enrollments from Coursera's platform.
"The partnership between Coursera and ACE is a milestone for the open education movement," said Gary W. Matkin, Ph.D., dean, Continuing Education, Distance Learning and Summer Session. "For the first time in the open education movement, students have a pathway to gain credit for open and free courses. This is a significant step forward in the nation's quest for low-cost, high-quality higher education."
UC Irvine also is part of a pilot effort to use measures of learner engagement in the award of low-cost certification and a path to degree credit. UC Irvine joins a select group that includes the University of Notre Dame, the Technological University of Delft (Netherlands), the California-based 20 Million Minds Foundation, OpenStudy, the OpenCourseWare Consortium and Excelsior College. OpenStudy will offer its assessment engine based on documented competencies, behavioral profiling and social analytics. The OpenCourseWare Consortium will provide the low-cost Certificates of Participation. Excelsior College, a degree-completion university, will provide the path to degree credit through separate assessments.
"We're pleased that two of our strategic partners, the OpenCourseWare Consortium (OCWC) and OpenStudy, have joined forces to further the Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) movement," said Matkin.
A member of the OCWC since 2006, UCI has contributed over 90 courses to the some 20,000 offered by the members of the OCWC and has worked with OpenStudy on three courses, "Capital Markets," "Training and Human Resource Development" and "Fundamentals of Clinical Trials" that will be available under the Certificate of Participation pilot. OpenStudy is a leader in the creation of viable learning communities and now joins the effort to covert the learning accomplishments of students into degree credit.
For more information about UC Irvine's OpenCourseWare project, visit http://ocw.uci.edu/. For a full list of course offerings across disciplines and universities or to enroll in an upcoming course, visit Coursera.org. For additional information about OpenStudy, please visit http://openstudy.com/.
ABOUT UC IRVINE'S OPENCOURSEWARE INITIATIVE: The University of California, Irvine was the first University of California campus--and West Coast University--to join the OCW Consortium. UC Irvine's membership in the OCW Consortium is consistent with its public- and land-grant missions and its desire to play a significant role in contributing to the social welfare of the state, the nation and the world. Open educational resources (OER) showcase the University's high quality education and makes courses and course materials free for everyone in the world. UC Irvine's OCW is a large-scale, Web-based resource that houses educational assets that are discoverable, searchable, modifiable, and, best of all, free and easily available. Through the OCW Movement, UC Irvine provides university-quality courses and learning assets to populations of self learners that are underserved and in many cases, unable to participate in formal education at a university. This site also offers access to UC Irvine's online continuing education offerings. For more information about UC Irvine's OCW initiative, visit http://ocw.uci.edu/ or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE: Founded in 1965, UC Irvine is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since 2005, UC Irvine is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California system, with nearly 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty and 9,000 staff. Orange County's largest employer, UC Irvine contributes an annual economic impact of $4.2 billion. For more UC Irvine news, visit www.today.uci.edu.
CONTACT: Jessica Neuman, 714.573.0899 x 223
SOURCE UC Irvine